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Tag Archives: identity
Something about this recent article in TIME has been bothering me. I first read it because a Facebook friend posted it with a thoughtful comment about the role imagination plays in developing a social consciousness in children. This makes sense to me. Imagination is important. Raising children who want to do good in the world is laudable. But some of the logical leaps the article itself makes do not work for me; in fact, they are really troubling.
When Disney came out with the movie Brave, I loved it. That’s probably not surprising. I identify with the heroine, Merida, on the levels of appearance and heritage, for one thing. But, more importantly, writer Brenda Chapman is from my home county of just 30,000 people. And, even better, this is one of only a few “fairy tales” I’ve ever witnessed where the heroine’s ultimate happy ending does NOT come in the form of a guy.
And then THIS happened.
I liked her so much better when she was spunky, independent, and NOT oozing sex appeal.
I went to CPTSC for the first time this year, and I found the atmosphere collegial and the focus of the scholarship presented important. However, I was struck by something that I see as representative of a far larger problem, and that is the specialization of rhetorics of race, gender, and class. In other words, it seems that there are certain people who talk about (what we might call) rhetorics of Otherness, and they get to do that work only in certain, special places. The problem with this is that these rhetorics are (still!) Other; they are not “mainstream”; they are not always already assumed. They are marked, even at an inclusive and progressive conference like this one.
Yesterday, I attended a talk given by Dr. Kristie Dotson. Dr. Dotson is an incredible presenter, and I’ve been told by people who know that she’s shaking up the philosophy community. After hearing her speak, I fully believe this!
Dotson began her presentation by asking why there are so few accounts of black women’s lives that go viral in positive ways. She also pointed out the transient nature of stereotypes of black women; that is, as an example, stereotypes of black men have remained pretty static all the way back to the era of slavery in the U.S. But modern stereotypes of black women–the “welfare mother,” for example–are relatively new. Continue reading
The following is a link to a group project I helped with as part of the class Women and Criminal Justice: